Science, Sex, and Suicide

Feb 14, 2020 by

by Randall Otto, Public Discourse:

Why would Scientific American urge a ban on therapies that may free some from an identity associated with greater depression and suicide, and yet never question “treatments” for gender dysphoria that lead to increased confusion, depression, and suicidal tendencies?

[…]  Obviously, we should make every effort to help those who are caught up in the depression and hopelessness that lead so many to consider, let alone attempt, suicide. Suicide is a national epidemic: more than twice as many people die by suicide as by homicide in the United States each year; in 2017, suicide was the second leading cause of death among individuals between the ages of ten and thirty-four. Notably, youth who identify as part of a sexual minority (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or questioning) have more than twice the rate of suicidal ideation; and transgender youth report significantly higher rates of depression, suicidality, and victimization compared to their cisgender peers.

Since the editors at Scientific American seem to be very concerned with preventing suicide among teens, one would imagine that they would give significant attention to how best to help young people who experience gender dysphoria. Yet the Scientific American website shows little caution regarding the questionable validity of gender affirmation and of social or medical transitioning as treatments for gender-dysphoric children and teens. Instead, its articles strongly affirm both: see for instance “Sex as a Spectrum” and “How to Meet the Needs of Transgender Kids.”

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